Field of Cows

From Field of Cows

Welcome to the Field of Cows, a collection of bits and pieces by Roy Hopkins.

This site is primarily for me to collect together things that I find useful that I don't want to forget but occasionally I may put together some pages that others may find interesting. Please have a browse and see what you can find.

I'm just getting this information together so bear with me if you find broken links. I shall be fixing them in due course.

If you want to contact me, you can email me at


Retrofit Diary

I tried to make the effort to document my retrofit of the Boxford 125 TCL CNC Lathe. It's horribly out of date as I've now refitted the machine again but someone may find it interesting.

Visit the diary here.

CNC Machines

I like to watch machines seemingly working by themselves being controlled by a computer. That's why I've played around with a couple of CNC machines. Take a look at these machines:

JGRO CNC Router - My first CNC machine. Totally built using non-computer controlled tools

Joe's 2006 CNC Router - My second CNC machine. Almost all parts of this machine were built using the JGRO CNC Router

Boxford 125 TCL CNC Lathe - Small training lathe by Boxford. A working but ongoing project to convert this machine from BBC micro control to PC control.

Denford Starturn 4 - Another small CNC lathe. Again, basically working but an ongoing project

USB Modbus Interface - A simple Modbus I/O board that connects to a PC using USB


I make a living writing software for McAfee. I don't work on the antivirus products, I work on Endpoint Encryption which provides full disk encryption services. My work generally involves either writing preboot code (before the operating system starts) or drivers and the like for PCs running Windows and Linux as well as for the Mac, which I'm currently working on. This means I spend most of my time writing low level code in C and assembler. Exactly what I like doing!

As well as writing software for work, I quite often start my own projects at home, normally just for fun or to make something that is useful to me (but not normally to anyone else!). These projects normally run on some sort of PC platform but occasionally spill onto some custom hardware such as a PIC microcontroller.

Where I think it might be useful to others, I've posted details and source if applicable for some of my projects.

Wii Guitar Hero World Tour Drums to Midi - A simple project for Linux that allows you to use Wii drums as a General Midi drum controller.

PIC Modbus Code - I used Modbus to talk to my Boxford TCL 125 CNC Lathe. Many people have asked for this source code so here it is.

Boxorgan Synth - A sample player synthesizer with huge polyphony that is designed to allow you to play your PC as a pipe organ.

Brain Dump

In this section you will find snippets of information that I have been collecting that I don't want to forget. You may find something useful here but I doubt it.

Operating Systems





Useful Links